“This is the best day ever!” “I don’t want to leave!”
These are some of the exclamations from participants in last Friday excursion to Goff’s Caye provided by Oceana in Belize. This latest caye trip under Oceana’s I Love My Reef Campaign happened on the last day of the Belize City Council’s 2013 Summer Camp. The 78 young City residents, the vast majority of whom have never visited any caye or been on a boat before, were joined by 8 chaperones, 3 Licensed Tour Guides, a Ranger from the Coastal Zone Management Authority and Institute (CZMAI) and the Captain & Crew of the Splash Wave Tour vessel chartered for the day outing.
The more adventurous, older children got an opportunity to snorkel. Even those who opted not to snorkel got an up-close and personal experience with Belize’s marine patrimony on display at Goff’s Caye. In addition to the fun and games on Goff’s Caye, excursion participants got pointers on coral reef systems in Belize, fishing laws, mangrove systems, their purpose and protection on how to preserve and protect the marine environment. They caught glimpses of both manatees and dolphins before the trip ended. The trip also took the participant to the Swallow Caye Wildlife Sanctuary, an area where manatees congregate.
Oceana VP Audrey Matura-Shepherd commented, “Last Friday’s Goff’s Caye outing is the second consecutive year Oceana has partnered with the Belize City Council to introduce our world famous marine patrimony to inner city dwellers that might otherwise not get such an opportunity. The CZMAI also contributed by waiving the usual Goff’s Caye entrance fees and providing a Ranger to accompany the excursion.”